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Diversity at Colby

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Replies to: Diversity at Colby

  • happytalehappytale Registered User Posts: 20 New Member
    Thank you, sailfish! Although it's hard to forget the negative visual impression(due to the above mentioned video), that Colby had on me, I will definetely apply now. Thank you again, I may have missed the college of my life, if you didn't give such an informative answer, sailfish!
  • mom4mom4 Registered User Posts: 216 Junior Member
    A little anecdotal history about Colby's efforts towards diversity:
    I grew up IN Washington DC and attended a public high school that was 70% African American at the time (early 1970s). (I am caucasian). One of my best friends, a brilliant African American guy, was recruited and graduated from Colby. Meanwhile, one of my other best friends, a Caucasian girl, was recruited by Colby out of the blue; we thought that it was because she attended an urban public high school and had a last name that wasn't typically "white". Ultimately, she went to another college but we all were impressed by Colby's efforts.
    Hope this was presented appropriately; my youngest son may be applying!
  • maddowg1maddowg1 Registered User Posts: 36 Junior Member
    This is so amazingly racist, all of it. What the heck do you care what color people are, me included, a white New Englander. Getting so, so sick of being discriminated against for being in the majority. This is getting so insultingly ridiculous.m If I went to school in East Asia, I wouldn't be giving people a hard time for not being white.
  • KiltdadKiltdad Registered User Posts: 56 Junior Member
    To the last Respondent. Seeking and desiring diversity is not racist. As someone who grew up in New England and who has spent much of my adult life in Virginia, I will tell you that NE is really, really homogeneous. That is not a bad thing per se, but it is not reflective of the world in which most of America and humanity lives. I applaud Colby for its efforts at diversity; in its application process, its study abroad program and for seeking persons who seek and desire diversity in several aspects. My son will be applying this Fall. He is white in a school that is 20% white, 30% Hispanic and 40% plus Black. His only concern about Colby is whether it is too white or in his words, "Where in the f*** are the brothers, father?"
  • sailfishsailfish Registered User Posts: 125 Junior Member
    It is the farthest thing from racism. Many students want to study in a diverse environment that reflects the real world they will live and work in for the rest of their lives. They hope college will offer greater understanding of the world, in all its complexity, and exposure to all kinds of people. Those who are not interested in such an experience have other options....
  • thinker88thinker88 Registered User Posts: 210 Junior Member
    I think the point that maddowg was trying to make is that skin color is unimportant; that diversity has more to do with personality and life experience (correct me if I'm wrong). So, in a way, it is racist if we are defining Colby's diversity by skin color.
  • sailfishsailfish Registered User Posts: 125 Junior Member
    If Colby or any other college were to define diversity so narrowly that it was based only on skin color I could see the point--that would be a limited and artificial type of diversity. I don't really believe that's an accurate depiction of what is happening, though. At the other end of the spectrum, would top students who aspire to the highest level positions in business and government really want to spend four years in rural Maine at a college that was mostly made up of middle and upper class New Englanders from similar racial, ethnic and economic backgrounds? As much as I love New England, I highly doubt it. The best students know that such an artificial and parochial world would be far too limited to accommodate their dreams. Colby, like every other top college, is trying to create a world-class environment that will appeal to the best students--and the best students today are overwhelmingly comfortable with diversity in all its forms. Walk around the MIT campus someday--or NYU, or Columbia, or the University of Chicago or any other top university. Or check out other outstanding colleges in more rural areas--Amherst, Williams, Bowdoin, Middlebury, Wesleyan. You'll see the future of America and the world. For those who aren't ready for that kind of environment, there are colleges that are perfect for students who want to be surrounded by others who look and think just like they do. But I don't think Colby is one of those colleges and I hope it never will be.
  • KiltdadKiltdad Registered User Posts: 56 Junior Member
    I think it is foolish and dangerous to claim that skin color is and should not be a diversity factor. That is not to say that skin color is the only diversity element a school should pursue, but let's not kid ourselves: we do not live in a color blind society. If one thinks we have moved beyond race, try asking persons of color or any kid who goes to school with true racial diversity. Anyhow, I am glad Colby values diversity in its deeds and not simply its marketing materials. If it were otherwise I would not consider plopping down $50k a year.
  • 2collegewego2collegewego Registered User Posts: 2,710 Senior Member
    "I don't think you have to worry that minorities are routinely mistreated."

    Hmmmm.... I am a URM and my children are African-American. I can tell you from personal experience that there is quite a bit of racism in Maine. Some people will be nice and normal and there are other instances where store employees will follow you around to see if you steal. The truth is that many of these people have had little (or no) contact with AA and all they know is what they have heard so you are dealing more with ignorance than anything else.

    As far as Colby, I just saw a statistic online that says it has 41 AA students (25 males and 16 females) out of 1,847 students. There are 50 Hispanics, 9 native American students and 149 Asian/Pacific Islander. Just google Colby demographics and see what you get. So there aren't a lot of AA students but that doesn't mean that the students are not accepting. You can have a school with a lot of AA students and the students could be very separate. I think you need to ask students, particularly AA students, what their experience has been. When we visited Colby, my kid loved it and we did ask the one AA student we found a few questions. She was happy and didn't say anything negative about the school. (I don't remember asking anything about racial relations, however.) Just so you know, some of the female students bemoan the dating scene and lack of hair salons. (Meaning, even if the races get along fine, the white males may not be likely to date across racial lines while the black males do. So it is not uncommon for the black females to have a non-existent dating life at some of the less diverse LACs.)
  • thinker88thinker88 Registered User Posts: 210 Junior Member
    To clarify, I was only trying to clarify what maddowg said. I don't think that the college is actually defining diversity solely by race (although they do brag quite often about how many URM students there are in the 2014 class).

    As for 2collegewego's comment about dating: there is a very limited dating scene period. Regardless of race. Mostly just hook-ups like any other college.
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